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Modi'in Rabbi: 'They Tried to Kill Me'

A Modi'in rabbi reports he was the target of a murder attempt by Arab terrorists on the road to Jerusalem on Saturday night.
By Chana Ya'ar, Maayana Miskin
First Publish: 3/17/2013, 11:42 AM

Car hit by rock
Car hit by rock
Ichud Hatzalah

Palestinian Authority Arabs are continuing to carry out road terror attacks on the highways of Samaria and Judea, and now also on Highway 443. Saturday night, a rabbi said he narrowly escaped death.

After years of safe Israeli driving, the old Tel Aviv-Jerusalem highway was opened to PA Arab traffic as a "good will gesture" to prop up the Ramallah-based PA government of Fatah leader Mahmoud Abbas, despite numerous appeals to the government by area residents not to do so. 

On Sunday, Rabbi Chaim Navon, the rabbi of the Kehillat Shimshoni synagogue in Modi'in, reported on his Facebook page that he had been the victim of attempted murder.

“Saturday night, I’m driving on Highway 443 to an event in Jerusalem. There’s a loud bang. The window shatters. I was hit by a rock, and thank G-d, ‘the snare broke and we escaped,’” he said, quoting Psalms.

A police investigator who checked Rabbi Navon’s car told him that his was not the first case police had seen that day. The rock that nearly hit him was particularly large, police said.

“Eight in the evening, a major road, on my way to our capital. People I don’t know tried to kill me,” he concluded.

There have been many calls in recent days for police to treat rock attacks on motorists more seriously following an attack Thursday evening in Samaria (Shomron) that left an Israeli toddler in critical condition.

Two-year-old Adelle Biton was hurt Thursday when the car she was in veered off the road and into a truck that was standing on the road's shoulder, as a result of an ambush by Arab youths. The Arabs were hurling rocks at passing cars on the Trans-Samaria Highway (Route 5), at the Gitai Avisar Junction near Ariel. Adelle's mother, Advah, who was driving the car, also suffered moderate to serious injuries, and two of Adelle's sisters, Naama (6) and Avigayil (4), were moderately wounded.

Adelle underwent a second head operation just before the Sabbath began. Members of the public are asked to continue to pray for Adelle Bat Advah.

“Rock throwers are trying to murder and they need to be treated accordingly,” declared Bayit Yehudi (Jewish Home) party head Naftali Bennett.

In a statement issued Friday, Shomron Regional Council Chairman Gershon Mesika slammed the sluggish response by security personnel to the road terror attacks against Israelis on the roads of Judea and Samaria. "We must stop the lawlessness, create deterrence and defeat this terrorism," Mesika said. "Throwing stones is terror in every sense of the word."

IDF soldiers had arrested 10 suspects by Friday morning in connection with the attack at the Gitai Avisar junction, all of whom live in the villages of Hares and Kifl Harath, the area in which the near-murder took place. 

Rock attacks have previously caused serious injury and even death, as in the case of Asher and Yonatan Palmer, a young father and his baby son murdered by terrorists who hurled rocks at their car.